Legendary actress Elizabeth Taylor was born on this day 101 years ago.
She loved men, quite a few of them: she got married 8 times to seven different guys (Richard Burton twice) and said that she only slept with men she married. (I view this as a fantastic line by a very beautiful actress. It might even be true.)
Taylor said both, “Marriage is a great institution.” and “I am a very committed wife. And I should be committed too – for being married so many times.”
Freed0m doesn’t always give us exactly what we want or believe that we need.
But Freedom is more likely to work for us than tyranny
Betty Hutton had a strong voice. “Some kind of fun lasts longer than others.” she said.
She was born 102 years ago in Battle Creek, Michigan.
At three years of age, she and her sister and mother were singing in her family’s Speak Easy.
She won a best actress award in the screwball comedy The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek for playing a woman who was pregnant from a soldiers’ wild farewell party but unsure of who the father was or whether she had married him.
She won a most popular actress award for Annie Oakley.
There is a powerful historical precedent for Tulsi Gabbard’s transition from a Bernie Sanders Democrat to being one of the fiercest critics of Joe Biden’s warmongering abroad and attacks on freedom at home.
Between the 1930’s and the 1960’s, New Deal Democrat Ronald Reagan became a small government Republican and a two term President in the 1980’s. Many conservatives believe Reagan deserves to be added to Mount Rushmore.
In 2019 former Reagan Communications Director Pat Buchanan wrote an opinion peace attacking damage to the Reagan foreign policy legacy of avoiding major war entitled “Memo To Trump: Trade Bolton For Tulsi”. Buchanan quoted Gabbard’s criticism of Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton’s policies: “This insanity must end.” Buchanan praised her criticism as something Trump himself might have said in 2016.
Now in 2023, some people suggest Gabbard could be a great running mate for The Donald in 2024.
She has recently said:
A. that the Biden Democratic Party is “now under the complete control of an elitist cabal of warmongers driven by cowardly wokeness.”
B. that Leftist lawmakers racialise “every issue and stoke anti-white racism.”
C. “You see the final expression of cancel culture in Islamist terrorist groups like ISIS and Al Qaeda ……”
D. that it breaks her heart to see people like President Biden “so readily throwing our constitution in the trash, so readily passing policies and taking stands that violate our fundamental freedoms ……“
But the darknesses of human hearts mean that dream can turn out wrong.
Looking at three important freedom historical events on this date, February 20, my mantra “Freedom Works” doesn’t quite fit the bill every time.
In 1547, the 20th of February saw the coronation of Edward the 6th when he was 9 years old. My American monarchist friend says, “Poor little boy ….. Henry VIII’s desired, but mostly ignored son, motherless child who died too young …… ” One of the great achievements of his reign, when the realm was governed by a regency council, was to lift the requirement for celibacy from Anglican priests. This happened when Edward was an 11 year old boy.
On February 20, 1924, in New York City, Gloria Vanderbilt (pictured above in 1959 from The United States Steel Hour) was born into money and a sensational high profile custody battle between her mother and paternal aunt. Gloria lived life as a fully functioning woman, whose four marriages and affairs with Brando, Sinatra, Howard Hughes and Roald Dahl underline how impossible celibacy can be for some people.
In “The Rainbow Comes And Goes” she wrote, “Remember whenever money is involved, it brings out horrific things in people. ……. Take time and be certain you place your trust in those whose interests and goals mirror your own.”
In 1943 on February 20, the Saturday Evening post published Norman Rockwell’s painting, “Free Speech”, based on Frankilin Roosevelt’s idea of “freedom of speech, and expression—everywhere in the world.”
The 1940’s. The Greatest Generation. Not what we are now.
In the modern world, Roosevelt’s idea of worldwide free speech has withered and died.
The Greatest Generation grew up in Pre-Code freedom and then changed the world, defeating totalitarian fascist thugs.
The modern internet-fueled almost ubiquitous availability of hardcore porn has changed how sexuality enters many peoples lives.
Some but not all earlier times were straight-laced and sexless.
In 1927, Clara Bow became famous as a vivacious, arousing “It girl” in the movie “IT”, released 96 years ago today.
My American cinephile friend writes that British novelist and screenwriter Elinor Glyn had “……… really made the term widely used by the public in the USA and the British Empire, especially. Her books and the movies made from them, were thought to be SHOCKING; however, they were extremely popular.
“IT GIRLS” were not only “sexy”, but had great personalities, were bubbly and very outgoing and could make all men fall for them. “IT” was supposedly a special something, akin to flypaper.”
Colorado journalist Erin Blakemore writes in daily.jstor.org “………. what makes “IT” just as interesting as 50 Shades is the movie’s emphasis on women looking, wanting, and acting with sexual freedom.”
Elinor Glyn herself wrote this about “It”:
“ ‘IT’ is that quality possessed by some few persons which draws all others with its magnetic life force. With it you will win all men if you are a woman—and all women if you are a man. ………. To have “It”, the fortunate possessor must have that strange magnetism which attracts both sexes. He or she must be entirely unselfconscious and full of self-confidence ……..”
Clara Bow works her magic on William Austin in “IT” with words from Elinor Glyn.
God Bless Freedom where we figure out how to be true to ourselves including learning from other eras where pornographic excesses were much harder to find.
It is John Barrymore’s 141st birthday today or tomorrow. I mark the occasion and his gifts by naming him an Indigenous Man Of The Anglosphere. He was called the “greatest living American tragedian” giving acclaimed performances as Hamlet and Richard The Third.
Barrymore with Carol Lombard in “Twentieth Century”
His sister Ethel and brother Lionel were also actors.
To begin with, on the stage, his brother Lionel was more likely to be cast as a leading man. John would get the comedy roles. An American cinephile friend of mine writes: “By the time they all went into the movies ( silents ), John became the one to have the leading man roles and was known as “THE GREAT PROFILE”.
He loved living free.
Actors to portray Barrymore include W.C. Fields, Lawrence Olivier, Errol Flynn and Jack Cassidy.
Barrymore had alcohol problems at 14 years of age and was bankrupt in later life. He said, “Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn’t know you left open.”
It wasnt always the life of a an unattached libertine. He married Dolores Costello, pictured below.
John Barrymore described Hamlet as a “normal, healthy, lusty young fellow . . … he was a great fencer, an athlete, a man who led an active, healthy life.” In the above photo Barrymore is being a normal young man with Dolores Costello in “The Sea Beast”. Later on, she became his third wife.
I was sitting on the pavement this evening, in Melbourne, with my hat upturned in front of me and a few cultural messages to spread, when a young guy named Benny sat next to me informing me that I was wearing an amazing Wu-Tang jacket.
I had no idea what Wu-Tang meant, so I looked them up online to find out why that was important to Benny.
Today it is Rosa’s 110th birthday. To mark the occasion, I fuse her words with images of good, beautiful females I know and like and admire. One is a real woman, Deeanna Appadu, born and raised in Mauritius, and now in Australia. The other a goblin art comic and street-dwelling superhero, Shine Of The Moon. Both are women of color. In Shine’s case the color is tawny.
I brought them together once in one of Shine’s artistic homes
Geoff Fox, 4th February, 2023, Melbourne, Australia
Today is the 114th birthday of mystical philosopher Simone Weil who wrote: “Whether the mask is labeled fascism, democracy, or dictatorship of the proletariat, our great adversary remains the apparatus—the bureaucracy, the police, the military. Not the one facing us across the frontier of the battle lines, which is not so much our enemy as our brothers’ enemy, but the one that calls itself our protector and makes us its slaves. No matter what the circumstances, the worst betrayal will always be to subordinate ourselves to this apparatus and to trample underfoot, in its service, all human values in ourselves and in others.”
In one week, on February 10th, court proceedings, criminal charges, will begin against me, a 65 year old man with no criminal record, for refusing to stop attempting to stand up for an aboriginal or First Nations man who wanted to enter a church and was threatened with arrest.
The Orwellian stupidity and callousness of government and the injustice system in Australia seems to know no bounds.
I take solace in these facts:
A. The best people in churches in Australia know that this sort of thing is wrong. They are a light in what is now for me a very dark life.
B. I can still normally at peace in places of worship and with people devoted to truth and to God.
C. Gazing on the glorious mystique and attractive power of beautiful women is not yet a crime.
Like Anita Ekberg (pictured above and below) whose breakout role as an unattainable star was in la Dolce Vita, which was released 63 years ago on this date in Italy. When Ekberg had earlier played Helene in “War and Peace”, she was billed as “Paramount’s Marilyn Monroe.”
Anita Ekberg got into men’s heads. Because she could. That’s freedom.